About HKU

Research Postgraduate Studies and Research at The University of Hong Kong

Research postgraduate students are an important and valued part of the University. They currently make up around 10% of the total student population and contribute significantly to the research work of the University. The University also values the important role of non-Hong Kong research postgraduate students (77% of the total research postgraduate student population). They come from over 60 different countries, and provide intellectual stimulation and make an important contribution to the social and cultural life of the University. International graduates are attracted to HKU mainly because of its reputation as an international research-intensive university, and also because of its use of the English language as the medium of instruction.

The University recognises that quality teaching, particularly from a strong research base, is often the stimulus for graduates to embark upon research studies. As the leading comprehensive research university in Hong Kong and the region, we aim to maintain high quality research and postgraduate activities across a broad spectrum of disciplines, and to encourage work of a multidisciplinary nature. In this connection, the University has identified and provided support to various Areas of Excellence as well as proposals that will make leading-edge contributions to the academic community. Many of these areas have developed extensive international networks and strong inter-institutional collaboration work.

The University currently has over 7,700 teaching and research staff. They are recruited internationally, and are highly visible in cutting-edge research and international publications. They form a strong team in the provision of high quality postgraduate programmes. The University is committed to fulfilling its mission to offer the highest standards of teaching, research and scholarship by continuing to recruit high quality staff internationally.

Graduates of the University are employed in high-level positions in universities, government, business and industry in Hong Kong and around the world. According to our alumni survey, many of our research graduates hold senior academic positions in local tertiary institutions, while others are senior academics or active researchers in overseas universities and institutions of learning. Some of our graduates work in prominent universities such as the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford, Yale University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

The University offers MPhil, 3-year PhD (for those who already have a research Master's degree) and 4-year PhD (for those who have a Bachelor’s and/or a taught Master's degree) programmes. In addition to the long-established one-to-one mentorship system of supervision, a coursework component has been introduced that aims to provide research training to assist the students to complete their studies within their study period.

The University has excellent infrastructure, and provides a range of services and facilities to support postgraduate studies. Postgraduate scholarships, other scholarships and financial support for conference attendance/travel are provided to high-calibre research students. All full-time local research students may be eligible to apply for financial assistance from the government. The University’s world-class libraries and computer facilities ensure that students have access to an unrivalled learning and research environment.

The Graduate House and graduate student hostels provide accommodation and amenities for postgraduate students and serve as a focal point for postgraduate activities. Postgraduate students also have access to student and medical services and sporting and leisure facilities. They have the opportunity to take an active part in the social life of the University through various activities organised by the University and student associations.

There has been a strong commitment to the development of communication technologies and multi-media teaching within the University in recent years. The University has endeavoured to create a digital campus to encourage teachers and students to make wider use of information technology and to benefit from efficient electronic information exchange.